What are these beautiful, happy, non-shedding dogs that have brought such joy to our home? They’re called Australian Labradoodles. These are not simply a cross between a Standard Poodle and a Labrador retriever; they are hybrids that have been carefully bred over generations to continually improve temperament, coat, confirmation and size. These “multi-generational” dogs were designed to be non-allergenic service dogs, and the most loyal and sweetest of pets.
Thirty years ago, Australian Wally Conran, worked to find a guide dog that would be hypoallergenic for a patient in Hawaii. Two Australian breeders, Rutland Manor and Tegan Park, picked up the effort, working diligently to produce dogs we now refer to as Australian Labradoodles. They infused breeds such as the Irish Water Spaniel and the American and English Cocker Spaniel into the line. The results are a broader, more reliable service and therapy dog, with a gentleness that is hard to describe. We found our Australian Labradoodles, Tillie and Maddie, quite remarkable, easy to train, with a loving and intuitive disposition.
Why did we decide on this breed? After 15 years with a wonderful chocolate Labrador retriever, I vowed that our next dog would be smaller, easier to handle, and non-shedding. We wanted a medium-sized dog 25 – 40 pounds with a happy disposition. Australian labradoodles come in three basic sizes, standard, medium, and mini. The mediums were perfect for us. I can lift them into the back of our car, and into a doggy bathtub. After we got Matilda (Tillie), we got a second one, named Madelyn (Maddie). We co-own these two females with a breeder and they will produce two litters of Australian Labradoodle puppies for others to enjoy.
If you are interested in learning more about Australian Labradoodles, there’s an organization called the Australian Labradoodle Club of America. It was founded to foster and protect the breed, and their offspring, that come directly from Tegan Park and Rutland manor breeding stock. If you are looking for a puppy, be sure the breeders have been screened by the Australian Labradoodle Club of America (ALCA) and are members in good standing. This will help ensure you get a high quality, authentic Australian Labradoodle pup.